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Res Publica
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Store:  Card Games, Strategy Games
Edition:  Res Publica
Theme:  Ancient Rome
Genre:  Civilization Building, Trading
Format:  Card Games

Res Publica

butterbox edition

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Ages Play Time Players
10+ 30-60 minutes 3-5

Designer(s): Reiner Knizia

Manufacturer(s): Queen

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Product Description

The players collect and trade like mad in this card game. Five equal cards must be collected for each set. The faster you do this, the more points you get.

Product Information

  • Designer(s): Reiner Knizia

  • Manufacturer(s): Queen

  • Artist(s): Joachim Hartwig

  • Year: 2000

  • Players: 3 - 5

  • Time: 30 - 60 minutes

  • Ages: 10 and up

  • Weight: 349 grams

  • Language Requirements: Game components contain foreign text that does not impact play. An English translation of the rules is provided.


  • 60 people cards
  • 60 civilization cards
  • 20 score cards

Product Reviews


Average Rating: 3.7 in 3 reviews

by Ben
Back-up Game
March 12, 2002

If all games go bad, play this! One of the best trading card games. Every gamer should have this. Takes about 15min to get the hang of it but its worth it. Only fun with 4 or more players but can be played with 3. This game is worth its value and it can be played in any location. Anybody can learn this. Have fun!

A rather tricky trading game
March 21, 1999

Res Publica is a very interesting card game which reminds me of a sort of slow motion Pit (Parker Brothers).

The object of the game is to collect sets of cards. You get to draw the first sort of card (people) at the end of each of your turns. When you turn in a set of 5 people, you receive a village--which allows you to draw the second sort of cards for each one you possess. These civilization cards can be turned in (in sets of 5) for more victory points.

Of course the important part of this game is trading. On your turn you get to make ONE offer. This can be something you are looking for, or are offering up for auction. Each opponent gets ONE chance to either offer or request. You can then pick from the best counter offer.

Over the course of the game, you have to be very careful about watching what other players are looking for, and keep this in mind. And making the correct counter offer is critical as trading advances the game.

The game moves along nicely with lots of carefully worded trades. The only downside is that the first players to get their villages seem to be at a rather significant advantage. And sometimes the card deck order will keep a player from completing a set for some time. And this happens in about a third of the games I have played, and is the only reason I keep it from being 5 stars.

Unique verbal interplay.
July 13, 1999

Take the feel of Settlers of Catan and combine it with any trick taking card game, and you have Res Publica. One of those "you must have such-and-such before you can build such-and-such" games. However, this being strictly a card game, with a very unique player interaction/bidding-type system, is what makes this game worth playing. To obtain the sets of tribe or civilization cards you need to garner points, each player in turn has two options in the way to request a trade of cards. You may request one or two types of cards, as in, "I'm looking for . . .". Or, you may offer one or two types of cards from your hand, as in, "I have . . .". But, you cannot do both in the same turn! This process goes around the table with the other players presenting their offers, and you choose which one, if any, you wish to accept. This verbal interplay is the major strategic element of the game, with the rest of the game mainly being a lay-your-groups-and-draw-more-cards routine.

The high quality cards and graphics accent the theme of growing civilizations very nicely, also giving a microcosm semblance of playing the Civilization board game. For a unique and fun 45 minute card game with a sound theme and excellent interplay, Res Publica fits the bill nicely.

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